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French Vanilla: the Sweet Taste of Sovereignty

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Stories & Tales' started by GHalfrunt, Dec 27, 2011.

  1. Princeof Persia

    Princeof Persia Emperor

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    Sorry to hear about that.
     
  2. hoplitejoe

    hoplitejoe Top fun-poster

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    We can wait. I send my sympathies.
     
  3. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    Prince Hora, heir to the last dynasty of the Rapanui Empire, awoke. He looked around and saw nothing. He listened and heard nothing. He reached out and touched nothing. Likewise he could not taste nor smell. He was aware of himself and his surroundings, but he could not sense them. His surroundings at this particular moment were clouds of interstellar gas, glowing a faint red.

    What? he thought.

    He had fallen asleep in his bed after a hard day's work ministering at the Hindu mission in downtown Persepolis. He was fairly sure he was awake now, and he had a powerful and disturbing feeling of being a very long way from home. He did not know where he was, he did not know how long he had slept. He was almost certain that he was dead.

    Where are the gods? When will I be reincarnated so that I may continue to spread their word in the next life?

    He moved. He did not know how, and he did not care. Other bodiless consciousnesses noticed him, exchanged ideas for an instant, and left. Everything was silent yet salient. He felt the empty expanse around him. He was informed by other drifting consciousnesses that the gods were not there.

    Hora drifted instinctively through the cosmos for unknown years in unknown directions with unknown purpose by unknown means. All he knew at this point was that his spirit was being drawn to some far-away place. A little blue marble appeared in the distance. He sensed familiar geography and familiar people.

    Earth? He focused his consciousness on the world and, if he still had a forehead, he would have frowned. But... something is not right.

    The Great Powers were different. The mission in Persepolis was nowhere to be felt. Even the city of his forefathers, the majestic, historic, and tragically-fallen Hanga Roa, was absent. The people were somehow different, as well. They had not the slightest idea in their minds how they might one day build Moai statues or privateers. They had no espionage points. (He was not sure why he expressed it to himself in those terms, but that seemed right somehow.) It was as if he had found an Earth that was experiencing an entirely different history.

    Hora descended to Earth and did what any distressed ghost in his position would do: he possessed the first person he could.
     
  4. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    The axemen, adding insult to injury, set up camp in the ruins of Boston to rest and resupply themselves before making an attempt at taking New York. Aztlan saw this as an opportunity to seize some American territory of their own, and entered the war on the side of Quebec just as the Americans began a counteroffensive, seeking reparations for the Boston Massacre.

    Spoiler :




    It was expected that the American army would fortify themselves in the Appalachian Mountains to wreak* havoc on Quebecois mining and roads, but just as they were getting situated, something came over their general, who, in an apparent fit of madness, is claimed to have said "Go more northish! Why not is America all of this place? Who is Quebec?" The Americans took this as an order to attack the core of the country instead of simply walking over the border into Michigan...

    Spoiler :




    As funds for upgrades were running low and it had been assumed that the Americans wouldn't walk that far through hostile territory to attack the Northeast, Montreal was defended only by a small force of archers and warriors who were in no position to leave their posts and attack the marauding Americans. While the Americans rendered copper and gold mines unusable, burned crops, and harassed fur trappers, the axemen on the Mississippi pillaged the farms and quarries of the American Midwest.

    Spoiler :



    Having mysteriously regained his senses as quickly as he had lost them, the American general leading the invasion ordered his troops west to resume the original plan of invading Michigan. Electing to bypass Detroit for the more lightly-defended Sault Ste Marie, two units of American archers were promptly defeated by axemen, and the remainder of the force scattered.

    Spoiler :




    Prince Hora withdrew his consciousness from the general's body completely, baffled by the primitive world he had encountered and the strange nations that inhabited it. He resolved to continue looking for a less disastrous way he could intervene to make this world more like his own.

    -----
    *Dear internet: Please learn that this word is spelled "wreak", not "reak", "reek", "Reakk", or "wreck"!
     
  5. hoplitejoe

    hoplitejoe Top fun-poster

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    You truly are reeking of havoc.
     
  6. Optical

    Optical The Fall of the Eleventh

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    Help me. I don't know where I am.
    Great to see this story back :) - but at the same time, my genuine condolences. I know what grief feels like.
     
  7. thecaesar

    thecaesar Will appear randomly

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    :lol:
     
  8. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    When we last left our heroes, American archers were running aimlessly throughout the West, pillaging the homes and workplaces of the poor civilians of Michigan and Ontario. But, as they flailed helplessly due to the disastrous leadership of their possessed general, the better-organized forces of Quebec and Aztlan massed near the improbably named city of New York, Iowa...

    The American barbarians, fearful of their neighbors getting the upper hand in the war, offered Quebec gold for peace in 300 BC, but the bribe was rejected out of hand, and the American ambassador was sent back to Washington with a particularly insulting note, to be delivered personally to his king. For reasons lost to history — perhaps a bribe like that offered to Quebec, perhaps a realization that the back-and-forth pillaging in the Mississippi Valley had no real strategic purpose for them, or perhaps a simple loss of interest — the Aztecs made peace with America and vanished in a burst of graphical error even as their allies dispatched more American archers and built a force of axemen large enough to overcome the city walls of New York (catapults were still many years away).

    Spoiler :


    Still, Quebec had no ill will for their southern friends, who had crippled and isolated the Americans for them, and still regarded them as valuable trading partners.

    Spoiler :


    In 230 BC came the long-awaited "Big Push" against former New York (now given the geographically appropriate and properly French name "Dubuque"). The strategy of "throw lots of axemen at everything" was again validated, although it was archers who eventually moved in to take the city. Peace was promptly signed with America so that Quebec could focus on badly-needed improvements to its economy — and to equip its military with modern swords, using Aztec iron working techniques, so that their next war with America might be their last. The dream of uniting all of former French North America was slowly coming true.

    Spoiler :


    (A note to experienced players: I am terrible at war, so falling behind on technology just kind of happens whenever I try it.)
     
  9. MoreEpicThanYou

    MoreEpicThanYou The most Epic.

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    Not Canada :P
    Did this update get lost in the space-time continuum?
     
  10. Daedwartin

    Daedwartin Emperor

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    I blame the characters I starting using in my story :p. Mainly Bernkastel. It would likely amuse her to make this story be delayed.(I didn't make any of my most recent characters...)
     
  11. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    Obviously. As did I. What the hell, time? I feel like it was just April yesterday. And I didn't even get to go on summer vacation — workdays are just blending together so thoroughly I forget when I am.
     
  12. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    (Sorry, not much worth taking screenshots of this time.)

    Quebec was, at this point, a stagnating country, well on its way to losing power. The ability to overwhelm American forces through pure numbers and fervent prayers to the Gods of the Random Numbers was not enough to maintain them. Even as the Generalissimo (as the head of the Warrior Class had become known) reluctantly set aside more resources for the construction of libraries and markets and for scientific research, the educated classes became convinced that the warriors did not understand their needs and their process.

    Spoiler :



    The gradual cultural shift towards valuing education and commerce did not, however, lead to much material improvement, but to mutual resentment between classes. It was not until 400 years after the Slow War that the strange revolution based on these values took place. A uniform Code of Laws was introduced in 190, shortly after news reached Quebec of the founding of a foreign faith called "Confucianism". Rumors circulated about the benefits of Confucianism, although even the best-stocked libraries were unable to get ahold of the actual scriptures. Government practically ground to a halt during the ensuing period of transition. Disgruntled leaders of the scientific community, local entrepreneurs, and officers of the army met in Montreal (the center of the education movement) and conspired to... leave each other alone. The sitting Generalissimo was overthrown, assassinated by one of his advisors, and the new one issued a radical new amendment to the code of laws: strict separation of the population into classes based on profession. This, coupled with some micromanagement to fix how cities were using their resources, drastically increased the research output of the country, balanced the budget, and allowed for the upgrade of club-wielding militias into real military units. Around the country, forests were going down, mines and civic buildings were going up, and plans for what we would now call a civil service were in the works.
     
  13. SamSniped

    SamSniped DJ Goodboye

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    Glad to see you back! I approve of the avatar, by the way :lol:
     
  14. Lelouch

    Lelouch Co-Epic Emperor

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    nice.
     
  15. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    So I guess I'm trying to update monthly now. Thank you all, again, for bearing with me.

    -----

    As society resettled after the shakeup that was the caste system, science and architecture flourished. The city of Detroit was particularly affected, with the Academy of Alhazen and the Hanging Gardens causing a burst of cultural development in the city. (The completion of the Hanging Gardens coincided with a population boom and ensuing famine in other cities, one of the more bizarre coincidences in this world's history.)

    Spoiler :



    Scientific inquiry gave way to religious inquiry through the 700s, though. The traditional religion that had grown up within Quebec's cultural sphere became standardized. Serious theologians hypothesized that there was a "glitch" in the fabric of reality, and self-proclaimed prophets on the streets of every city claimed that the world's end would come "in a few more turns".

    Spoiler :


    Allegations of the impending end of the world became more plausible over the following decades in response to many new sources of strife: the renewed war between the Aztecs and the Americans...

    Spoiler :


    ...the failure of Quebec's architects to create a cathedral deemed suitable by the priests of their indigenous religion...

    Spoiler :


    ...a second war with America, this time initiated by Quebec...

    Spoiler :


    ...and the arrival of foreigners from across the sea on Quebec's shores (although they, at least, were willing to make substantial trades of money and technology).

    Spoiler :


    The world, however, failed to end on schedule, leaving the faithful in a state of crisis and public ridicule.

    Quebec, though, was now stronger and more prosperous than ever, and the war with America appeared to be fast and successful. The Aztecs were winning in the West, and the joint Aztec-Quebecois force to the north of Washington was poised to take the city...
     
  16. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    Background music.

    On New Year's Day, 1170, the spirit of Hora, ex-heir to the Rapanui throne, missionary, and astral traveler, descended again upon this planet. He had been watching, taking notes, trying to come to terms with the history of what appeared to be an alien version of his homeworld. The lonely centuries were driving him mad.

    Upon a sleeping girl in Isle aux Morts, the eldest child of a Merchant Caste couple who believed fervently in the impending doom of their world, he imparted a bizarre dream.

    Spoiler :
    Your nation is nothing compared to these far-away people of Egypt.
    Your score — why did I use the word "score"? that's a strange way of looking at things — is not so good, but still strong against your rivals yet to be met.

    Your leader is incompetent. I have seen many worlds and how their countries rose and fell. You may succeed someday, but your Levesque Dynasty is no great achievement in the scheme of things.


    As quickly as he came, he left, not waiting for the girl to register the strange images and respond. He had not done it to make a point. He had lost all coherency long ago. He was merely interfering for the sake of interfering now.
     
  17. CocoIsKing28

    CocoIsKing28 Slightly less stupid

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    Is that... ORANGE RUSSIA!!
    I almost forgot about that... orange doesn't fit them at all.
    Sad to see the Egyptians winning... and how did Spain take France before Germany or Rome?
     
  18. DC123456789

    DC123456789 Deity

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    How did the Egyptians win in 1170?
     
  19. GHalfrunt

    GHalfrunt Just zis guy, you know?

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    Mu. I'm playing as Quebec, which I created by transplanting France from Europe to North America.

    Apparently, a glitch. It has happened from time to time in other games, too, although I don't remember whether it was the same end year. I'm playing on Marathon, and I suspect that it's declaring victory based on the number of turns remaining on some other game length...
     
  20. CocoIsKing28

    CocoIsKing28 Slightly less stupid

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    Yeah, I know that you didn't have France, I'm just surprised that someone else didn't take the land of France before Spain.
     

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